— by CAM SMITH —
“Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans” has been at the very top of my must-see list for months now — above even film-geek cinematic altars of worship like Cameron’s “Avatar” and Peter Jackson’s “The Lovely Bones.” After that crazy-as-a-gunny-sack-of-greased-weasels leaked promotional trailer, wherein Nicolas Cage discharged hot lead at break-dancing souls and demanded to know why iguanas were chillin’ like villains on his coffee table, I was sold.
I mean, how could a super-powered team-up between two of the most lovably eccentric filmmaking artists around — Cage and director Werner Herzog — possibly lead to anything approaching ordinary or boring? Whether it’s a dazzling masterpiece or a gargantuan train-wreck, you can bet your bottom dollar that it will at least be hypnotically fascinating.
And if they can come up with at least two scenes half a memorably insane as Harvey Keitel’s verbally rapey interrogation of those two teenage girls in Abel Ferrara’s original film, they have a solid shot at achieving the former.
Thanks to the generous crew at Trailer Addict, our collective salivation for the yet-to-be-released final product can be temporarily appeased, with the fortunate appearance of a duo of new clips featuring Cage going full loco.
The first video is just an ever-so-brief appetizer showing Cage’s bloated, medication-numbed detective Terence McDonagh having a frustrated and stilted conversation with his girlfriend (played by Eva Mendes) over who should look after his father’s temporarily unnamed dog. It’s a fun smidgen of druggy dysfunction, but hardly anything TRULY kooky.
No, the real big tamale is the second segment, an extended two-minute chunk-of-heaven in which McDonagh, doped up, clammy and dishevelled, terrorizes a wheelchair-bound senior citizen and hard-case nurse for answers, dammit! Check out Cage’s applause-worthy entry into the scene — which I wouldn’t dream of spoiling — and listen to the peculiar cadence he uses in uttering the words “Children were executed!” Gold! Solid gold! And the scene only goes uphill from there.
And if these incredible sneak peeks aren’t enough to impress you, mull over the groovy cast-list: Val Kilmer, Jennifer Coolidge, Brad Dourif, Michael Shannon, Shawn Hatosy and my old crush Fairuza Balk. Wonderful — and a mite loony — actors all.
“Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans” is scheduled for a limited release run, which will kickoff this Friday, with added dates depending on positive word-of-mouth and encouraging box-office takes.
So, I think you now all know what your mission for this weekend is. Let’s get ‘er done, fellow film-fans and lovers of Cage-ian cinema everywhere!
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Click here for five more clips from the movie.
Follow Cam Smith on Twitter at http://twitter.com/camspcepisodes.